To fortify you, I bring you the second verse of my love song for savory oatmeal. It will have you jumping out of bed, eager for an excuse to begin your day. It’s quick, so you’ll have plenty of time to swing by your polling place on the way to work. It’s easy, so you can save your mental acuity for the important decisions of the day. And it’s clever, so it will remind you where you keep your stamps if you’re in a vote-by-mail state.* (*Not really.)
More important still, it’s a savory, creamy, hearty breakfast. And it’s halfway healthy, because it’s oatmeal. Talk about across-the-aisle collaboration.
I’m not going to disappoint anyone by telling you that banana bread is really cake, right? And this banana “bread” is no exception. It has a couple of healthful flourishes, yes–whole wheat flour replaces some of the white flour, and olive oil and yogurt stand in for butter–but it remains a sweet, dense, chocolatey cake.
And to be honest, I like whole grains in sweet baked goods at least as much for their hearty flavor as for any health benefit they confer (I mean, we’re still talking about cake here). These whole wheat chocolate chip cookies, this rye flour zucchini bread (also a cake, of course)—the whole grains add a layer of flavor and texture that leave more refined baked goods tasting rather insipid in comparison.Continue reading →
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Seasoned readers of this blog will probably not be surprised to learn that most of my photographs are taken standing on one leg while I use the other to block my children out of the frame. This dish was so irresistibly good, however, that I failed entirely.The baby (should I start calling her something else now that she boxes me out to dig into a dish of curried oats and caramelized onions?) could not keep her (meaning my) spoon out of the bowl. And I can’t say I blamed her at all. Continue reading →
I have a book in which I record, from time to time, the big and small adventures in our family’s life. I mean to write in it every day, just a sentence or two. More often, weeks or even months go by between entries. I try to catch the important stuff, though, when I do sit down to write–milestones and anecdotes from our daughters’ lives, travels we want to remember, loving moments with our extended family. And, of course, what’s happening in the kitchen.Our family’s book begins with applesauce. It was an October when I started the family journal (abandoning, in the process, my girls’ individual baby books) and we had just turned our three trees worth of apples into a year’s worth of applesauce. So in a way, I think of making applesauce as the beginning of each new year. At this time of year I often flip back through the years contained in my book and marvel at how fast life changes. And how each chapter is even better than the last.
Applesauce, though, is a constant in our lives. Every year we lighten the groaning branches of the apple trees in the fall, piling box after box of apples into the house. We sort the apples, setting aside the unblemished best for eating and sharing. We eat and bake and dry as many apples as we can. And the rest become applesauce for the year ahead.Continue reading →
A new dish has come into my life recently. I mean, it’s an old dish, maybe very old, and maybe you’ve been eating it for breakfast or dinner all your life, but I’ve only gotten to know it in recent years. And I’m a little obsessed. It’s called shakshuka.
It’s a Tunisian dish, or an Israeli or a Libyan dish, depending on who you ask. All I know is that I’ve been loving a version from my local bagel shop (which also inspired that caramelized onion hummus recipe). Shakshuka is a mildly spicy stew of tomatoes and peppers, adorned with a poached egg. In this recipe, adapted from Yotam Ottolenghi’s Plenty, the eggs are poached right in the tomatoes and peppers, making for a one-pot meal of the most delicious sort.Continue reading →
Have you entered the Food in Jars Cookbook giveaway yet? Do it now. It’s not just for canning enthusiasts, although it might turn you into one.
The entire point of today’s post is to entice you to run out to the farmers market and scoop up a final case of late-September peaches. Are you convinced? Because this weekend we are making jam, probably for the last time this summer. Saffron Peach Jam. Yes, it’s as intriguing as it sounds. Yes, you will want to cook along. And yes, a side benefit of having peaches in the house is that you can eat them on ricotta-slathered toast for breakfast. Continue reading →
The ways of the fruit trees are mysterious to me. One year it’s a bumper crop of plums, this year just enough for one indulgent afternoon. The apple trees are staggering under the weight of their fruit, but we only got one apricot. And the pear tree, espaliered out of the way on our small city lot, produced its customary dozen pears. Which yielded, after a little bit of cleanup and a lot of simmering down, one and a half cups of chunky pear sauce.
We made the most of it with these muffins.
Let me just admit up front that they’re more cake than breakfast, unless you can see your way to combining the two–in which case, I assure you, you won’t be alone. The crumb is tender, the tops are crisp with sugar, and the muffins are fragrant with the heady scents of cardamom and vanilla. Continue reading →